The Sex Lives of College Girls: Comparing Porn to a Class With Politics

This week, the internet cast its eyes on a podcast series that ends in a coming-of-age sexual comedy where the four main characters have different sexual activities each episode. The name of the show: The Sex Lives of College Girls.

Why should we care? Is this music? Why is it a music show?

This show’s not an actual podcast, but a podcast parody created by producer Charlie Lane in 2014 for a show of the same name. While the name comes from the alt-comedy series College Humor’s very own parody show The Humor Deprived, the real name of the series became pretty popular when it premiered on Comedy Central in September 2016, so the creation team picked up the distribution rights and turned it into an original scripted series that debuted at the beginning of this month.

“The sex life of college girls can be incredibly complicated,” the show’s description reads. “But the one thing we really agree on is that, while having sex is always fun, it’s never guaranteed.”

So it’s a comedy about the awkward hilarity that ensues when you attempt to have as much sex as possible without anyone appreciating the effort. Female, let alone minority, sex workers often find it harder to have successful romances and relationships, so the actors and actresses who play the characters have included them in the show to give it a contemporary twist.

In this way, there are “All-Female Cast” episodes, where all four characters are the only women featured and one character is playing the “heroine,” also named Cynthia. Some of the episodes have not been made available on the web and Vimeo, but are out in a DVR-ready format and easily found through searching on YouTube.

Several episodes provide insight into a specific stereotype about sex workers that many people suffer through without realizing, while in others the shows communicate ideas about giving sex workers the support they deserve.

There is more (and more explicit) hilarity as characters have to establish relationships with sex workers and the show opens up the complicated world of online sex work and controversial approaches to it. While a foregone conclusion, one character says the importance of sex is eventually diminished because of how quickly it’s forgotten.

“It’s funny to see how much a certain series of conditions are like umbilical cords,” the character said. “The last person we knew was Sheila and she was forced to deal with, you know, the situation for like two years before we saw her again and now she’s on the other side and we were promised a year of delivery and that was it. It just got chipped away at when you didn’t see her and now when she comes back, it’s completely new. And that’s what we got wrong. It’s really long to be having your life saved by just the instinctual part of your brain.”

Before Cynthia, Sheri, Elisa and Simone are prostitutes, they are all but a series of quick sexual encounters in which they all develop different relationships over the course of the episode.

“The character,” the description reads, “is a female student who’s trying to find the best way to ‘find her place’ in a male-dominated world and ends up trying her hand at finding her own agency in the aftermath of her break-up with her boyfriend.”

Before Cynthia, Sheri, Elisa and Simone are prostitutes, they are all but a series of quick sexual encounters in which they all develop different relationships over the course of the episode.

“The character,” the description reads, “is a female student who’s trying to find the best way to ‘find her place’ in a male-dominated world and ends up trying her hand at finding her own agency in the aftermath of her break-up with her boyfriend.”

In case the show isn’t really about sexuality, this is a subplot about a student who learns about Internet porn and the queer subculture of watching NSFW videos in class. And if it isn’t more about sexuality than gender, it is all about the look-at-me-looking-like-a-pedophile when a prospective sex worker sees a friend’s fake head.

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